About CHSC

The Center for Health and Safety Culture (CHSC) is an interdisciplinary center serving communities and organizations through research, training, and support services to cultivate healthy and safe cultures. The Center is dedicated to applying research to develop sustainable solutions to complex social problems.

The Center for Health and Safety Culture’s research focuses on understanding how culture impacts behavior, especially behavior associated with health and safety. The Center has expanded beyond using solely positive community norms to a model that considers a broader set of cultural influences (i.e., values, beliefs, and attitudes). This comprehensive operating model to measure, analyze, and transform culture is called Positive Culture Framework (PCF). The framework is grounded in validated psychological models of human social behaviors related to health and safety.

The Center addresses a variety of traffic safety issues, among other issues, working with federal, state, and community agencies as well as private non-profit and for-profit organizations and companies.

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Key Staff

Affiliated Montana State University Faculty

Dr. Eric Austin - Associate Professor of Political Science

Dr. Kaylin Greene - Assistant Professor of Sociology

Dr. William Schell - Assistant Professor of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering

Dr. Steve Swinford - Associate Professor of Sociology

PCF Training

The Center for Health and Safety Culture at Montana State University invites you to attend the Positive Culture Framework training on our updated approach which is based on the latest research and builds on the Positive Community Norms framework. The framework embraces a cultural approach, is grounded in the latest science, and includes positive norms in improving health and safety. 

The Center’s PCF training provides a foundation for efforts to improve health and safety addressing a wide variety of issues including (but not limited to) substance abuse, traffic safety, and violence prevention. Participants will leave with an understanding of how culture influences behavior, how we can cultivate cultural transformation, and the benefits of a comprehensive, positive approach.

The training covers our revised process and initiates the development of your skills in three critical areas: leadership, communication, and the integration of effective strategies. Participants will leave with specific next steps for implementing this process for transforming culture to achieve community health and safety goals. The training provides an excellent opportunity for participants to engage with others who work to improve health and safety culture across the country.

For more information, please contact the Center for Health and Safety Culture at mail@CHSCulture.org or (406) 994-7873.

Visit the PCF training website at: www.chsculture.org/training.

Symposium

CHSC Symposium 2018

Many individuals working to improve health and safety are recognizing the role of culture to achieve and sustain our goals in public health domains such as traffic safety, substance abuse, interpersonal violence, and child well-being. To be effective using culture as a basis for promoting health and safety across multiple domains, individuals working to improve health and safety need to be aware of current research and best practices in transforming culture. Recognizing this need, the Center for Health and Safety Culture holds their annual Symposium, which supports the evolution of science and practice in creating a positive culture to sustain safe and healthy choices. 

Objectives:

  • Share best practice in methods of cultural transformation
  • Understand the latest science about the relationship of culture with health and safety
  • Explore how positive culture improves health and safety
  • Foster new partnerships, knowledge, and insights

Rather than choosing a traditional conference format where speakers and experts share information with attendees, the Center’s symposium unique, as attendees will have the opportunity to engage in group discussion, listen to presentations in multiple formats, and construct awareness and understanding collectively. 

For more information, please contact the Center for Health and Safety Culture at mail@CHSCulture.org or (406) 994-7873.

Visit the Symposium website at: www.chsculture.org/symposium.

Publications

FY 2018 Finley, K. Ward, N.J., & Otto, J. (2017). The role of safety citizenship to improve traffic safety. Manuscript submitted for publication. 

Ward, N.J., Otto, J., & Finley, K. (2017).  An assessment of traffic safety culture about driving under the influence of cannabis (DUIC) amongst cannabis users in Washington and Colorado. Manuscript submitted for publication.

FY 2017 Ward, N.J., Schell, W., Otto, J., Finley, K., Kelly-Baker, T., & Lacey, J.H. (2017).  Cultural predictors of future intention to drive under the influence of cannabis (DUIC). Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 49, 215-225. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trf.2017.06.013

Ward, N.J., Schell, W., Kelley-Baker, T., Otto, J., & Finley, K. (2017). A national opinion survey about the culture of driving under the influence of cannabis (DUIC). Manuscript submitted for publication.

Austin, E. & Green, K. (2017). Community participation. Book chapter in Traffic Safety Culture: Theory, Measurement, and Application. Manuscript submitted for publication.

Finley, K., Ward, N.J., & Otto, J. (2017). An example of measuring traffic safety culture. Book chapter in Traffic Safety Culture: Theory, Measurement, and Application. Manuscript submitted for publication.

Otto, J. & Ward, N.J. (2017). Measuring traffic safety culture. Book chapter in Traffic Safety Culture: Theory, Measurement, and Application. Manuscript submitted for publication.

Ward, N.J., & Otto, J. (2017). Action frameworks for cultural transformation. Book chapter in Traffic Safety Culture: Theory, Measurement, and Application.  Manuscript submitted for publication.

Ward, N.J., & Otto, J. (2017). A proposed standardized operational definition of traffic safety culture. Book chapter in Traffic Safety Culture: Theory, Measurement, and Application.  Manuscript submitted for publication.

FY 2016 Nagler, M. & Ward, N.J. (2016).  Lonely Highways:  The role of social capital in rural traffic safety.  Eastern Economic Journal, 42, 135 – 156. 

Ward, N., Boyle, L. N., Velasquez, M., Otto, J., & Page, L. (2015). Preliminary efforts to quantify the safety culture of transportation agencies. Presented at the Transportation Research Board 94th Annual Meeting Transportation Research Board. Retrieved from https://trid.trb.org/view.aspx?id=1338013

Center for Health and Safety Culture. (2016). Positive culture framework: A foundation for cultural transformation. Montana State University.

Ward, N.J., Otto, J., Swinford, S., Keller, S., & Linkenbach, J. (2015). Traffic Safety Culture Paradigm.  In A. Smiley (Ed.) Human Factors in Traffic Safety (3rd ed).  Tucson, AZ: Lawyers & Judges Publishing Company. 

FY 2015 Otto, J., Ward, N., Swinford, S., & Linkenbach, J. (2014). Engaging worksite bystanders to reduce risky driving. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 26(B), 370–378. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trf.2014.02.006

Wambeam, R. A., Canen, E. L., Linkenbach, J., & Otto, J. (2014). Youth Misperceptions of Peer Substance Use Norms: A Hidden Risk Factor in State and Community Prevention. Prevention Science, 15(1), 75–84. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11121-013-0384-8 

Ward, N., Otto, J., Swinford, S., & Borkowski, J. (2015). Measuring Minnesota’s Traffic Safety Culture. Minnesota Department of Transportation. Retrieved from http://www.dot.state.mn.us/trafficeng/safety/shsp/safetyculture.pdf

FY 2014 Ward, N. J., Otto, J., & Linkenbach, J. (2014). A Primer for Traffic Safety Culture. ITE Journal, 84(5), 41-47. Retrieved from https://trid.trb.org/view.aspx?id=1311223

Ward, N. J., & Özkan, T. (2014). In consideration of traffic safety culture. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 26(B), 291–292. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.trf.2014.09.004

Linkenbach, J. & Otto, J. (2014). Promoting positive community norms- A supplement to CDC’s essentials for childhood: Steps to create safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.